Response to Armed Suspect on Campus
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Response to Armed Suspect on Campus

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Learn how UNCW responded to an armed suspect on campus incident using the Blackboard Connect mass notification service. Covers lessons learned and tips to improve campus safety communications and ...

Learn how UNCW responded to an armed suspect on campus incident using the Blackboard Connect mass notification service. Covers lessons learned and tips to improve campus safety communications and dealing with the media.

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Response to Armed Suspect on Campus Response to Armed Suspect on Campus Presentation Transcript

  • BLACKBOARD CONFERENCE: UNCW RESPONSE TO ARMED SUSPECT ON MAIN CAMPUS Presented by Joy Davis and Kevin Madsen University of North Carolina Wilmington
  • Crisis Communications at UNCW  15+ communication “tools”  The full system – including five outdoor sirens – are tested regularly.  Branded as the “UNCW Alert” emergency communication system.  Around 9,500 contacts opted into Connect Ed text and voicemails  More than 120 hazard-specific scripts developed for text, email and voicemail messages
  •  Mass email message (Blackboard Connect Ed)  Mass text message (Blackboard Connect - opt in)  Mass voice message (Blackboard Connect - opt in)  Five outdoor warning sirens (mechanical – tone only)  UNCW Alert Google website  Emergency information hotline  Facebook announcement  Twitter announcement  @UNCW announcement (faculty and staff news website)  Cable interruption message  Campus Channel 77  “Breaking News” banner on UNCW website  Homepage news story  News & Events website story  Entrance marquee (visible to public) The System View slide
  • May 8, 2012Blackboard Conference: University of North Carolina Wilmington Presentation View slide
  • Campus Emergency Responders (in 2011)  University Police (UPD)  40 sworn police officers and telecommunicators  Lead for criminal incidents 24/7  Responsible for first alert for major incidents  Environmental Health and safety (EH&S)  Nine staff  Emergency operations plan, drills, emergency mitigation, etc.  Coordinate emergency response  Marketing and Communications (MaC)  Staff of 16  Crisis communications plan, emergency communications tools and emergency alerts  Responsible for emergency alerts to campus and communications to media
  • Emergency Notification Process  UNCW Police initiate campus communications via Connect Ed and sound the siren.  UNCW Police debriefs and “passes the baton” to MaC.  MaC begins to communicate to campus by deploying most (or all) UNCW Alert tools.  Ongoing communications – updates initiated every 30 minutes on web-based information sources  Media calls are addressed and reports are monitored (including social media)  Communication with media and stakeholders can last for days or even weeks after.
  • Speed and Communication Impacted by  Multiple jurisdictions – Wilmington Police Department, FBI, etc.  Multiple emergency responders – Wilmington Fire Department, New Hanover Regional Medical Center, etc.  Media – local, state, national  Time of day –response may take more time at night  Number of staff – need for support grows as the incident unfolds  Available information – significant time needed to gather info and craft message, especially in large-scale incidents
  • After receiving reports of an armed robbery at the Hardees adjacent to campus, UNCW Police and Wilmington Police search campus for suspect. Incident – Gunman on Campus
  • May 8, 2012Blackboard Conference: University of North Carolina Wilmington Presentation
  • November 14, 2011 11:54 p.m.  Wilmington city Police communicate that robbery suspect reportedly carrying a gun fled onto UNCW’s main campus: “Two women reported that they were in a car in the parking lot when a man approached on the passenger side. The victims said the man pointed a handgun at them and demanded their money and cell phones. They gave him their cell phones and a wallet, and the robber ran away. The victims said the man ran toward a wooded area between College Acres Dr. and Randall Parkway on the UNCW campus. WPD notified the UNCW police about the incident…” 11:58 a.m.  Text, voicemail and email sent by UNCW Police  Messages received by campus in three minutes The decision is made not to sound the siren due to the time of night.
  • First Message This is a U N C W Alert. I repeat: this is a U N C W Alert. A gunman is/Gunmen are on the U N C W main campus now. AM Eastern Standard Time 1158 PM Monday, November 14, 2011 Immediately go to a safe and secure location. Stay away from windows. Lock doors. Emergency personnel are responding. Monitor cellphone. the U N C W homepage. local media. w w w dot u n c w dot e d u slash alert. and the Emergency Information Hotline at eight eight eight six five seven five seven five one. Occurred off campus at Hardees.
  • 18,324 People Contacted  Phone:  Successful Deliveries  Live Answer  Voicemail  Unsuccessful Deliveries  Hang Up  No Answer  Undeliverable  Network Busy  Busy  Bad Number 8,479 4,252 4,227 502 191 160 125 16 6 3 94.4% Success Rate
  • November 15, 2011 12:10 a.m.  Joy begins to initiate crisis communications plan from her office, Kevin arrives shortly to assist. 12:22 a.m.  MaC has sent notifications via all additional tools, including social media  A technical issue with the posting of the hotline message surfaces; tech support is called  Area TV stations have posted the story online  MaC begins receiving a flood of calls from media  Media have arrived on campus; the library is notified that media are arriving and may request interviews  Monitoring of media stories and social media begins
  • Social Media  Facebook: A gunman is/Gunmen are on the UNCW main campus now, Hardee's just off campus, 1158 PM, Monday, November 14, 2011. Immediately go to a safe and secure location. Stay away from windows. Lock doors. Emergency personnel are responding. Additional information will follow when available. Monitor your phone, the UNCW homepage, www.uncw.edu/alert, the Emergency Information Hotline at 888.657.5751.  Twitter: Gunman is/Gunmen on UNCW main campus 1158 PM, Monday, Nov.14, 2011. Immediately go to a safe and secure location. www.uncw.edu/alert.
  • Hour Two 12:51 a.m.  Homepage, UNCW Alert site and other web-based tools are updated with new time. 1:22 a.m.  Information technology resolves the hotline issue and a message is posted 1:24 a.m.  MaC sends updated message to campus and media via all communication tools
  • Phone Message - Update This message is being sent at 1:17 a.m. on Tuesday, November 15. A gunman was spotted on the UNCW main campus shortly before midnight on Monday, November 14, 2011. The gunman was reportedly robbed a person in the Hardees’ parking lot and fled onto the UNCW main campus. No shots were fired and there are no reported injuries. The suspect is a black male approximately 18 to 21 years old carrying a small caliber handgun. Additional police have been brought in at this time and are searching campus properties and buildings and following up on leads. The campus is asked to stay alert and to report any related information to UNCW Police at 911. Monitor your phone, the UNCW homepage, www.uncw.edu/alert, the Emergency Information Hotline at 888.657.5751 and local media for more information.
  • Hour Two con’t 1:31 a.m.  By this time, the UNCW Police Chief has been interviewed by multiple media outlets including the Associated Press. Media requests are coordinated by MaC 1:44 a.m.  National media are misreporting story; Marketing begins to correct errors  Homepage, UNCW Alert site and other web-based tools are updated with new time 2:02 a.m.  Separate message sent to media
  • Message to Media Police at the University of North Carolina Wilmington continue to search for a gunman who was spotted on the UNCW main campus shortly before midnight on Monday, November 14, 2011. The gunman reportedly robbed a person in the Hardees parking lot on College Road and fled onto the UNCW main campus. No shots were fired and there are no reported injuries. The suspect is a black male, approximately 18 to 21 years old, carrying a small caliber handgun. Additional police have been brought in to search campus properties and buildings as well as to follow up on leads. The victim in the Hardees robbery is not a UNCW student. UNCW and Wilmington police responded to the incident and saturated the area. At this time, the suspect has not been located. Officers continue to patrol the campus and peripheral areas, with the safety of the campus community as their top priority. The campus has been asked to stay alert and to report any related information to UNCW Police at 911. Updates have been sent to the campus via email, text messages, voice mail messages and postings to the UNCW homepage and the Emergency Information Hotline at 888.675.5751. More information will be provided as it is available.
  • Local News UNCW police alert students and staff of gunman on campus overnight WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Shortly before 5 a.m. Tuesday, Wilmington Police and officials of UNC-Wilmington lifted a shelter order for students and staff to remain indoors. Officials say a man involved in an armed robbery at Hardees fled towards UNCW's campus and is still at large. Extra security was in place at the university Tuesday while police continued to search for the man. According to police, two women said they were in a car in the parking lot of Hardee's at 429 South College Road when a man approached the passenger side door around 11:55 p.m. The victims said the man pointed a handgun and demanded money and cell phones. They gave him the requested items, and the robber ran away toward a wooded area between College Acres Drive and Randall Parkway on UNCW's campus. http://www.wect.com/Global/story.asp?S=16040487 Wilmington police say a man robbed at least two people at gunpoint in the parking lot of the Hardee's restaurant at 429 South College Road. Got the alert to my phone 40 mins ago. I live off campus, but props to UNCW for getting the word out so fast. @Chris_Eason Nov 15 2011 +21 Share | Flag
  • National News UNC Wilmington Holds Classes While Gunman Is At Large 11/15/11 06:09 AM ET Associated Press WILMINGTON, N.C. -- Classes were scheduled to proceed as usual Tuesday morning at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, as the search continued for a gunman who ran toward the campus after a holdup overnight. Instructions for students to remain in secure locations that had been issued after the holdup shortly before midnight Monday were lifted at 5 a.m. Tuesday, school spokeswoman Dana Fischetti said. The suspect in the robbery of four people at a nearby fast food restaurant was still at large early Tuesday, but extra police officers were on campus as the search continued, Fischetti said. Students were free to move about the campus, but should be alert and report suspicious activity to police, she said. The school had issued alerts via email, text message, voicemail and on the university's website after the robbery. Those on campus were warned to find a secure location, lock doors and stay away from windows. Wilmington police used a helicopter and K-9 unit to try to find the man, who was wearing a red cloth over his face, Officer Kenneth Reichard told The Associated Press. Campus Police Chief David Donaldson told the AP the alert was issued as a "precautionary measure." The suspect was carrying a small-caliber handgun, Donaldson said. Located on North Carolina's coastline, the university has about 13,000 students and has grown significantly since a 2002 bond issue that paved the way for more than $508 million to be spent on capital projects at the campus. Although well-known for its ocean and marine research programs, the school offers dozens of majors and has also been used as the preseason training camp of the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats. In August, another situation involving a gunman on campus raised concerns from university officials who said the school's emergency alert system failed to properly notify the campus as police searched for a man accused of a shooting in a nearby apartment complex. After the shooting, Donaldson ordered a campus-wide alert via phone, text message and email to warn the community about the armed man on the loose. The alert was never sent. Officials said at the time the lapse appeared to be a case of human error rather than a technical problem, and Fischetti said updates were being sent to the campus via text message, email and voice message late Monday night and early Tuesday morning. The alert system at UNCW encompasses not only phone calls, emails and text messages, but can include everything from social media to the interruption of cable television on campus. The system was adopted by the university after the 2007 massacre at Virginia Tech as a way of getting emergency information out in as many formats as possible in a short amount of time. The school had issued alerts via email, text message, voicemail and on the university's website after the robbery. Those on campus were warned to find a secure location, lock doors and stay away from windows. Wilmington police used a helicopter and K-9 unit to try to find the man, who was wearing a red cloth over his face, Officer Kenneth Reichard told The Associated Press. Campus Police Chief David Donaldson told the AP the alert was issued as a "precautionary measure." The suspect was carrying a small-caliber handgun, Donaldson said. In August, another situation involving a gunman on campus raised concerns from university officials who said the school's emergency alert system failed to properly notify the campus as police searched for a man accused of a shooting in a nearby apartment complex. After the shooting, Donaldson ordered a campus-wide alert via phone, text message and email to warn the community about the armed man on the loose. The alert was never sent. Officials said at the time the lapse appeared to be a case of human error rather than a technical problem…
  • A Waiting Game 2:12 a.m.  Homepage, UNCW Alert site and other web-based tools are updated with new time 2:33 a.m.  Police continue to search campus, but the scent of the suspect has been lost  UNCW Police requests that no more messages be sent until more information is available  MaC continues to receive numerous local and national media calls  UNCW Police Chief continues to be interviewed by CNN and other media 2:45 a.m.  Homepage, UNCW Alert site and other web-based tools are updated with new time
  • The All Clear 5:00 a.m.  It is determined that and “all clear” will be called and classes will continue 5:19 a.m.  “All Clear” message sent via all communication tools  Similar information is shared with media; media calls begin to flood in again
  • The Next Morning 7:15 a.m.  UNCW Police Chief has been interviewed by more than 15 media outlets 9:28 a.m.  600+ media outlets around the world have covered the incident; most are favorable  Corrections are requested for the few inaccurate media stories  Multiple media calls are still streaming in; several media interviews have lined up for the remainder of the day
  • What happened after the incident? After Action Review
  • Considerations  Constant communication about actions taken and situation  Answering media calls  Social media monitoring  iReporting  Getting message details and approval  Monitoring situation updates  Handling on-scene media  Controlling external messages  Logging  After action
  • Lessons Learned  Frequency of messages – all clear wasn’t given until 5:15 a.m.  Staffing – redundancy, night vs. day incidents (most have been in the late evening hours)  Law enforcement communications  Media training/preparation  Communication between emergency response groups  Amount of time to send a message (cycle)  Exercising the plan
  • Blackboard Connect 5
  • Questions Kevin Madsen, Emergency Management Office: (910) 962-7874 Email: madsenk@uncw.edu Joy Davis, Media Relations Specialist (formerly) Office: (910) 916-8603 Email: davisjoyc@gmail.com
  • To Request a Demo of Blackboard Connect 5 http://connect.blackboard.com/democonnect Text BBDEMO to 97178 May 8, 2012Blackboard Conference: University of North Carolina Wilmington Presentation